Welcome to our ‘The Truth Behind the Song’ feature. For this feature, we’ve asked a number of our favourite artists to give us in-depth piece about a song that has a special place in their heart. Today we feature the brilliant Cindy M.Emch of Secret Emchy Society, who gives us an insight into the meaning behind ‘Everything Was Fine’.
Cindy M. Emch:
“Everything Was Fine” was the third song I wrote for our new album The Chaser. It was for sure the most organic one in that it was written on scraps of paper, on bar napkins, and in my datebook as I drove – mostly alone – up and down I-5 on a number of West Coast tours in 2018 & 2019. Those hours on the road when you’re solo are the hardest. Often I’d be doing 10-12 hours drives in one day by myself and at a certain point – especially on the mountain roads – my mind would start to turn on itself. I’d think of all the friends who aren’t around anymore, I’d replay every regret, every insecurity, every questionable decision, and well like the song says – “the lonely hits your stomach like it’s cheap rotgut wine.”
When the introspection hits the hardest are the times when the lyrics come. When I had sung along to every mix CD, playlist, and Pandora station I had made for the trip and was sick of even my favorite songs. I had already gotten flat tires, and the wildfires had turned the picturesque forest into a charred graveyard of pines and redwoods. I watched the road rage dude I had been behind for three hours just drive right off the side of the road and called 911 and noted the mile marker because – omg what?!?
I felt like I entered a surreal fugue state and then suddenly – I’d arrive at the show. All those solitary ‘drive you crazy’ hours were done and I would have friendly people all around, a soundcheck, my chosen family I hadn’t seen in months or years, and I would get to play live and people loved it, buying merch, buying me drinks, all of us dancing and shouting and joyful. So the endorphins run, the whiskey flows, and suddenly “Everything Is Fine.” That’s what this song is about. It’s also about the times when I would have the bandmates and pals with me in the car. The good times when I’d have my daily check-in with other musician friends also on tour. When I felt like a part of the giant network of indie musicians making it happen and driving those asphalt arteries of North America, just getting to the next dive bar to give it all we’ve got, to leave my heart on stage and then head on to the next town. It’s about – no matter how good or how hard it is – just believing that everything might really be fine. And music is how we get there.